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EUBENA NAMPITJIN

1921 - 2013

 

Eubena was born around 1920 at Tjinjadpa, west of Jupiter Well, Great Sandy Desert. She had little contact with non indigenous Australians until she was in her twenties. She and her family travelled the Canning Stock Route to Billiluna Station following the mission until it was established at its present site in Balgo. Here Eubena became a senior law maker for her people.

 

Eubena began painting in 1986 when women were becoming more included in the art movement, and many of her early paintings were collaborations with her second husband Wimmitji Tjapangarti. They developed a unique style of representing their environment using the warm colours of the desert. Her reputation grew, initially as one half of this famous duo, and then as a sought after solo artist becoming one of the major artists from the Balgo community. 

 

While living at Balgo Eubena continued to travel back to her country, living in and from the land for extended periods. Her paintings are metaphors for her landscape, and she often depicted the water holes that her family used when she was a child, the women’s dancing tracks and the sacred rocks.

 

Solo exhibitions of Eubena’s work were held in 2000 and 2002. 

 

Collections 

  • National Gallery of Australia 

  • Art Gallery of New South Wales 

  • National Gallery of Victoria 

  • The Holmes á Court Collection 

  • The Laverty Collection 

  • Warlayirti Artists Aboriginal Corporation Collection 

  • Kluge-Ruhe Collection 

Artwork

Ngunguntarra depicts two waterholes. The ‘yinta’, as they are referred to in the Kukatja language, are represented as circular shapes in the middle of the painting. These waterholes are a permanent source of water in Eubena’s country, and this particular site is known as Ngunguntarra’. ‘Tali’ or sand hills common to this country fan out around the central icons.

Exhibitions

  • First Nations Art Exhibition, Australian High Commission, London 2023

  • Country’, Sydney Nolan Trust 2022

  • Dreamtime’, Linlithgow Burgh Halls 2019 

Eubena Nampitjin, Ngunguntarra, 1999
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